Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Empty-Wallet Wednesday: A Tale of Two Shoppers
Friends and readers: I hope you all had a happy and safe Thanksgiving. I also hope you had a great Black Friday and a killer Cyber Monday.
I seem to remember not too long ago when Black Friday was just a retail industry term for the one day of the year that could change a company’s P&L from red to black. Somehow the term has crept into our national lexicon and collective psyche. As I went through my e-mails on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 22, I had at least a half-dozen sale-oriented e-mails pitching Black Friday sales. Most referenced Black Friday right in the subject line, just so I would know that something more than special would be offered that day. I even got a Black Friday offer from a car dealership.
It certainly seems to me that the media turned this day into the biggest shopping event of the year — just like Presidents Day, Valentine’s Day and other major shopping days. Thanks to the Internet, we also have its sister event, Cyber Monday. Now we have even more competition, as shopping events become clashes worthy of sibling rivalry (or an opportunity for marketing channels to be in sync).
I chose to write this on Thursday evening, Nov. 22, after Thanksgiving dinner, feeling mostly recovered from the sleep-inducing agent in my turkey. Others in my family were getting ready to shop, too. My wife was going to hit the mall extra early to beat the traffic, hopefully the crowds too, while scoring the best gifts at a discount. She’ll likely turn Black Friday into an all-day marathon, going in to many stores and spending as much time as possible perusing each rack, end cap and item until she has fully scratched the internal itch that will not let her miss one perfect fit for someone on her shopping list.